Father: Drewery Evans
Mother: Theodocia Jacobs
Spouse: Elizabeth Miller
m: ~1846 - Casey Co., KY
Child-1: Martha C.
2: Mary M.
3: Thomas Jefferson (Jeff)
4: Sarah Emmaline (Emma or Emily)
5: James Johnson (J. J. or Jim)
6: Mahala Jane
John T. Evans was born about 1824, probably in Fentress County, Tennessee, although this is not absolutely certain. His parents were Drewery and Theodocia Jacobs Evans. His middle name is not definitely known, but there is good reason to believe that it was "Thomas" (notwithstanding that his putative older brother was also named Thomas.) Further details of his early life are quite sparse. However, it seems reasonable to assume that he was still living with or near his parents and younger siblings in Clinton County, Kentucky, at the time of the 1840 US Census and that he moved with them to Casey County, Kentucky, when he was about seventeen or eighteen years of age. The marriage date of Elizabeth Miller and John T. Evans is not known. However, on February 12, 1848, John and Elizabeth Evans were evidently married since, they jointly sold their interest in a parcel of land lying in Casey County to Elijah J. Miller, an older brother of Elizabeth.1 Moreover, it is obvious from the terms of the conveyance that this interest derived solely from her inheritance of lands included in the estate of her father, John Miller. John and Elizabeth Miller Evans were listed as a separate household in the 1850 US Census for Casey County, which also included their two oldest daughters, Mary and Martha, whose ages were given as two and three years, respectively. Since, their oldest daughter was born in June of 1847, this suggests that John T. and Elizabeth Miller Evans were probably married in Casey County no later than the late summer or fall of 1846 and most likely sometime in late 1845 or early 1846. Moreover, in addition to the household of John T. Evans, the households of his widowed mother and older brothers also clearly appear in these census records. (In particular, the household of John M. Evans, which appears on the same page as that of John T. and Elizabeth Evans, can be identified, in fact, as that of James Monroe Evans.) Therefore, it seems clear that in the late summer of 1850, John T. Evans and his wife and children along with his widowed mother and all of his other siblings and their families were living in six separate households in Casey County.Source Notes and Citations:
Sometime in late 1850 or, as is more likely, early 1851, John T. and Elizabeth Miller Evans emigrated to Gentry County, Missouri, since it is known that their older son, Thomas Jefferson, was born in Gentry County on April 26, 1851. It appears that they settled on one hundred and twenty acres located in what is now Howard Township. The legal description of this land is "the East half of the Southwest quarter and the Northwest quarter of the Southwest quarter of Section Twenty-two in Township Sixty-four of Range Thirty" and was conveyed to John T. Evans by patent entered at Plattsburg, Missouri, and issued October 30, 1857.2 Since, during this period immediately before the Civil War, the delay between application and issuance of a land patent could be as long as several years, this date is consistent with the arrival of John T. and Elizabeth Evans in Gentry County in the early 1850's. The described land parcel lies about one mile southwest of Lone Star, which is approximately ten or eleven miles north northeast of Albany, Missouri. Subsequently, John T. and Elizabeth Evans sold the western forty acre parcel to Evan L. Williams on April 25, 1857.3 (This is actually before the patent issued which should not be regarded as unusual.) Furthermore, in the History of Daviess and Gentry Counties published in 1922, John Evans is said to have been engaged in farming and stock raising here in his lifetime and was the owner of eighty acres of land. He was a Democrat and a member of the Methodist Church and a highly respected pioneer citizen. He died in 1860 and his wife died in 1856.4 Therefore, at the time of his death John T. Evans was only about thirty-six years old and left six minor children as orphans since their mother had died four years previously, probably in childbirth. According to an old family tradition, both John T. and Elizabeth Evans were buried in the Wayman Cemetery, which is about one half mile south of the location of their farm in Howard Township.5 There are no existing markers for either of them in this cemetery, however, there are about twenty early graves which are unmarked and it seems likely that they are among these. It is not known why John T. and Elizabeth Evans decided to leave Kentucky and make the difficult journey to Missouri. Naturally, one can speculate that as with other pioneers of the time, their motivation was to obtain better land in a less settled region. Clearly, they left most of their family behind and probably never saw any of them again. However, according to the 1850 US Census for Gentry County, Elijah Miller, the brother of Elizabeth Miller Evans, was living in the household of his brother-in-law and sister, Robert and Ann F. Austin, and thus, all of them had preceded John T. and Elizabeth Evans from Kentucky to Gentry County. In addition, a younger brother, Jefferson Miller, had also migrated to Gentry County at or about the same time as his brother and sister. Indeed, it was common practice for pioneer families to migrate to regions already settled by relatives and neighbors and there were a number of early settlers in Gentry County that are known to have come from the same area of Kentucky, among which were the Canaday, Spainhower, and Chilton families. As asserted above, John T. Evans died about 1860 and in 1864, Robert Austin was designated as the administrator of his estate.6,7 Of course, since he was the oldest living male member of the family, this role is consistent with prevailing custom of the time. Accordingly, the remaining eighty acres of land was sold "at the court house door" on January 2, 1865, to Elijah J. Miller, John Evans' brother-in-law. One can only suppose that this was the "keep it in the family". Unfortunately, it is evident that John T. and Elizabeth Evans did not survive long after coming to Missouri. The causes of their early deaths are not definitely known, but in addition to the danger of childbirth for women, the ravages of infectious diseases such as pneumonia, typhoid, and cholera, were rampant on the frontier due to poor sanitation and other hardships of pioneer life.
1. This Indenture made and entered into this 12th day of February 1848 Between John Evans and Elizabeth Evans his wife of the one part and Elijah J. Miller of the other part and each of the county of Casey, Kentucky, witnesseth that the sd. Evans and Elizabeth his wife for and in consideration of the sum of ninety Dollars in hand paid have granted bargained and sold and by these presents doth grant bargain sell enfeoff and convey unto the said E. J. Miller the entire interest claim and demand in the land lying in Casey County of which John Miller our ancestor decd. surveyed and possessed with its appurtenances. To have and to hold the said undivided claims and interest in the said land together with any of its appurtenances unto the said E. J. Miller and his heirs forever and the said John Evans and Elizabeth Evans his wife covenants with the said E. J. Miller that they have title to the said undivided interest and claim in the land of their said ancestor John Miller Decd. in common with the other Heirs of the Deceased and will forever warrant and defend the said title interest and claim being an equal undivided Eighth part of the said land unto the said E. J. Miller from the claim of all persons whatsoever.
In witness whereof the said John Evans and Elizabeth Evans have hereunto set their hands and seals the day and the date first written. /s/John Evans (seal) /s/Elizabeth Evans (seal) Witness: Joel Sweeney
Casey County sct: I Joel Sweeney Clerk of the Court for the aforesaid County do certify that on the 12th day of February 1848 the foregoing Deed from John Evans and Elizabeth Evans his wife to E. J. Miller was presented to me and by the said John Evans acknowledged to be his act and Deed and Elizabeth Evans the wife of the said John Evans having been examined by me separate and apart from her husband declared she had finally and willingly signed sealed and delivered said writing and wishes not to retract it and acknowledged said writing again shown and Explained to her to be his act and Deed and insomuch that the same may be Recorded.
Whereupon the same is truly Recorded in my office. /s/Joel Sweeney (Deed Bk. 5, Casey Co., KY, pgs. 337-8.)
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2. The United States of America; Certificate No. 22,353; To all to whom these presents shall come, Greeting: Whereas John T. Evans of Gentry County, Missouri, has deposited in the General Land Office of the United States, a Certificate of the Register of the Land Office at Plattsburg whereby it appears that full payment has been made by the said John T. Evans according to the provisions of the Act of Congress of the 24th of April, 1820, entitled "An act making further provision for the sale of Public Lands," for the East half of the Southwest quarter and the Northwest quarter of the Southwest quarter of Section Twenty two, in Township Sixty four, of Range thirty, in the district of lands subject to sale at Plattsburg, Missouri containing One hundred and twenty acres according to the official plat of the Survey of the said Lands returned to the General Land Office by the Surveyor General, which said tracts have been purchased by the said John T. Evans; Now know ye, that the United States of America, in consideration of the premises, and in conformity with the several acts of Congress in such case made and provided, Have Given and Granted, and by these presents Do Give and Grant, unto the said John T. Evans and to his heirs, the said tracts above described: To have and to hold the same, together with all the rights, privileges, immunities, and appurtenances, of whatsoever nature, thereunto belonging, to the said John T. Evans and to his heirs and assigns forever. In Testimony Whereof, I, James Buchanan, President of the United States of America, have caused these Letters to be made Patent, and the Seal of the General Land Office to be hereunto affixed. Given under my hand, at the City of Washington, the Thirtieth day of October in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and Fifty seven and of the Independence of the United States the Eighty second. By The President: James Buchanan; By Wm Flinn, asst Secretary; J. N. Granger Recorder of the General Land Office (US Land Patent Certificate No. 22353; MO, Vol. 478, pg. 213, Bureau of Land Management, Washington, DC, issued 30 Oct 1857. (BLM GLO Records, http://www.glorecords.blm.gov/default.aspx, 2016.))
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3. THIS DEED, Made and entered into this 25 day of April in the year of our Lord Eighteen Hundred and fifty seven, by and between John T Evans and Elizabeth Evans of the County of Gentry in the State of Missouri parties of the First Part,and Evan L Williams of the County in the State aforesaid party of the Other Part:
WITNESSETH, That the said parties of the First Part, for and in consideration of the sum of Forty DOLLARS them in hand paid by the said party of the Second Part, the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged, hay (sic - have) GRANTED, BARGAINED AND SOLD, by these presents do GRANT, BARGAIN, SELL AND CONVEY, unto the said party to the Second Part, his heirs and assigns foreveer one certain tract, piece or parcel of Land, situate, lying and being in the County of Gentry, State of Missouri, to wit: The North West fourth of the South West quarter of Section twenty two in Township sixty four of Range thirty containing forty acres berthe (sic - the) same more or less
TO HAVE AND TO HOLD the said tract, piece or parcel of land, with all privleges and appurtenances thereunto belonging, or in anywise appertaining, unto him the said party of the Second Part, his heirs and assigns, against the lawful claim of claims of all persons whomsoever.
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, The said parties of the First Part have hereunto set their hands and seals, the day and year first herein written. /s/John T (his X mark) Evans (seal) /s/Elizabeth (her X mark) Evans (seal)
STATE OFMISSOURI COUNTY OF GENTRY} ss.
BE IT REMEMBERED, That on this 25 day of April in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and fifty seven before one John McGurley a Justice of the Peace within the county of aforesaid, personally appeared John T Evans and Elizabeth Evans his wife who are personally known to me to be the person (sic - persons) whose names are subscribed to the foregoing instrument of writing as a party thereto, and acknowledeged the same to be their act and deed for the purposes and uses therein contained. And she the said Elizabeth Evans being by me first made acquainted with the contents of said Deed, and examined separate and apart from her husband acknowledged, on such examination, that she executed the same, and reliquish right of dower in the Real Estate mentioned, freely and without compulsion or undue influence of the said husband John T Evans, In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal the date last above written. /s/John McGurley JP (seal)
STATE OFMISSOURI COUNTY OF GENTRY} ss.
I, A G Whitten Cleak of the Circuit Court and Ex-officio Recorder, within and for the County aforesaid, do hereby certify that the foregoing Deed, together with the Certificate of Acknowledgement thereon, was received by me for the record on the 11 day of July A. D. 1859, and that the same are truly recorded in my office, in Book I for recording Conveyances, at Page 334
IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my official seal, at office in Albany, the 12 day of July 1859. /s/A G Whitten Recorder (seal) By /s/J M Ruby Dr
The foregoing Deed was filed for Record in this office on the 7 day of Mar 1887, at 1 o'clock 10 minutes P M. /s/Jno S Williams By /s/Mo B Rose (filed: 11 Jul 1859, Bk. I, Gentry Co., MO, pg. 334; refiled: 7 Mar 1887, Bk. 74, Gentry Co., MO, pg. 662.)
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4. John C. Leopard and Buel Leopard (Daviess Co.), R. M. McCammon and Mary McCammon Hillman (Gentry Co.), History of Daviess and Gentry Counties, Historical Publishing Company, Topeka, KS, 1922: pg. 820. (Reprint available from the Higginson Book Co., 148 Wash. St., P. O. B. 778, Salem, MA, 01970)
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5. "John Evans died in 1860, according to Gentry County History, 1922. He is buried in Wayman Cemetery. He owned 80 acres of land, a quarter mile east and a half mile north of the church, adjoining land of John Austin and William Caster land. He was a Methodist and possibly attended a Methodist class in Wayman church. Needles Methodist Church, farther west was built in 1855. Mrs. John Evans (Elizabeth Miller) died six or seven years after her husband and also is buried at Wayman Cemetery in an unmarked grave. Land on the north side of Wayman Cemetery was known as the Evans Pasture, according to one of the Waymans. The church was Moved to new location on the north side of road, 30 years ago across from cemetery. According to Wayman people, 1952 (first Sunday in August) marks the 100th anniversary of the Wayman Church where John Evans and Elizabeth Miller-Evans possibly worshipped in the early days of the Wayman Church."
Although Robert Birbeck, the author of this note, had access to first hand as well as published accounts, he is incorrect in his statement that Elizabeth Miller Evans died after John Evans. However, he is correct about the location of land owned by John T. Evans, since this agrees precisely with the location as described in the land patent cited above and would indicate that the homestead itself was probably located in the southeast corner of the parcel. (Unpublished notes on local history written by Robert Birbeck, Rt. 2, Stanberry, MO; probably in 1952.)
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6. To whom these presents shall come I, Robert J Austin Administrator of the Estate of John T. Evans deceased send Greeting. Whereason the 5th day of September A D 1864 the Probate of the County of Gentry in the State of Missouri at the September term thereof for the year 1864 ordered by an entry of Record that I as Adminstrator of said estate sell at public sale on a credit of twelve months the East half of the South West quarter of Section Twenty two (22) in Township No Sixty four (64) of Range No Thirty (30) situate in said County of Gentry, or so much thereof that may be necessary to pay the debts of said estate, and whereas previously to the day of sale hereinafter mentioned. I, as such admistrator caused a notice that said Real Estate would be sold at public sale on the 2nd day of January A D 1865 while the County and Probate Court of said County were in session at the Court House door in the town of Albany in the said County of Gentry on a credit of twelve months to be published in the Grand River News a newspaper published in this State for four weeks, copies of said notice to be put up in ten public places in said County twenty days before the day of sale being dispensed with by order of said Probate Court, and whereas previously to the day of sale, I as such Adminstrator had said Real Estate appraised in due form of law by John Wayman Vincent Carter and Thomas J. Williams three disinterested householders of said County who on the 2nd day of January A D 1865 having fin... made the affidavit required by law appraised said Real Estate to be of the value one hundred and Sixty dollars and so certified in their certificate of appraisement by virtue of which said order of sale, notice and appraisement and the power me by law vested so to do, I as such administrator did on the 2nd day of January A D 1865 between the hours of Nine in the forenoon and five in the afternoon of that day, at the Court House door of said County of Gentry while the Probate Court of said County was in session expose to sale openly at public auction a credit of twelve months all the right title and interest which the said John T. Evans had in and to said real estate at the time of his death and Elijah Miller being the highest and best bidder for the same at the price and sum of Ten Dollars the same was stricken off and sold to him for that sum whereas the December adjourned term for the year 1864, of the Probate Court of said County held on the first Monday in January A D 1865 and the 2nd day of said month I, as such administrator made to said Court verified by my affidavit as the law directs and accompanied by the certificate of appointment and a copy of the advertisement of my proceedings touching said sale including the manner time, terms, and place of sale, and of the property to be sold and to whom sold all as heretofore set forth which said report as thereupon approved by said Court by its proper order entered of Record. Now therefore in consideration of the promises and of the said sum of Ten Dollars to me said administrator paid by the said Elijah J. Miller the receipt of which is hereby acknowledged, and by virtue of the authority in me vested by law I, Robert J. Austin administrator as aforesaid, do hereby grant sell and convey to the said Elijah J Miller all the right title and interest which the said John T. Evans had of in and to said Real Estate at the time of his death, to have and to hold the right title and interest hereby conveyed unto the said Elijah J Miller his heirs and assigns forever with all rights and privileges thereto belonging. In Witness whereof I, Robert J. Austin administrator as aforesaid have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal this 9th day of January A D 1865. /s/R J Austin Administrator (seal)
State of Missouri County of Gentry} ss.
Be it remembered that on this 9th day of January A D 1865 Robert J Austin who is personally known to me the undersigned Justice of the Peace within and for the County aforesaid to be the same person who as Administrator of the Estate of John T Evans decd signed the foregoing instrument of writing as a party thereto this day personally appeared before me and acknowledged that he executed and delivered the same as his voluntary act and deed as such Administrator for the uses and purposes therein contained. Given under my hand the day and year herein first written. /s/James West J. P.
State of Missouri County of Gentry} ss.
I, Chas G Comstock Clerk of the Circuit Court and ex officio Recorder within and for the county aforesaid do hereby certify that the foregoing Deed together with the certificate of acknowledgement thereon was received by me for record on the 1st day of March 1865 and the same are truly recorded in my office in Book M for recording conveyances on page 484 & 485. In Testimony Whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my official seal at office in Albany Mo this 17 day of March 1865. /s/Chas G Comstock Recorder By J A Stuart D. R (seal)
Filed for record June 27 1885, at 4 O'clock 30 min P M. /s/J B Thomas Recorder (filed: 1 Mar 1865, Bk. M, Gentry Co., MO, pgs. 484-5; refiled: 27 Jun 1885, Bk. 58, Gentry Co., MO, pg. 232.)
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7. Carmeta Robertson, They Paved the Way, 1800-1875, The Printery, Albany, MO, 1988: pg. 103.
Evans, John T., marital status unknown
Birthdate and place unknown
Died: Gentry CO, MO prior to Oct 11, 1864 when Robert Austin was appointed Adminstrator
Source: GRAND RIVER NEWS, October 28, 1864
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6. 1850 US Census Population Schedule for Casey County, Kentucky, National Archives, Washington DC: pg. 319A, (microfilm: roll M432_196; img. 67).
7. Larry M. Evans, "Notes by Larry M. Evans", Springfield, IL, May 7, 1979, unpublished. (non-circulating copy available in the Casey County Public Library, Liberty, KY)
8. Robert L. Evans, "Our Family's History", November 9, 2001.
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